Software Piracy

What is Piracy?

The copying, distributing, storing, possessing, using, demonstrating and transmitting of software for personal and/or business use without the authorization of the copyright holder.

Piracy in software is more than in others because it is relatively easy to copy software in computers especially in PCs and for all practical purposes the pirated version looks and performs in an identical manner as the original.

Types of Piracy: The five principal types of software piracy involve


Counterfeiters are relatively new phenomenon in the software industry and most flagrant software counterfeiters produce disks, documentation and packaging that look very similar to those of the software publisher.


Reseller piracy occurs in the software distribution channel, when distributors or dealers either make copies of software onto floppy disks, or the internal storage device or the "hard disk" of computers that they are selling, without authorisation from the software publisher.

Mail Order Houses

Mail-order piracy consists of the unauthorised copying of software onto diskettes, CDs, or other media and distribution of such software by post.

Bulletin Boards

Bulletin board pirates engage in unauthorised reproduction and distribution of software via telecommunication. Typically, this involves an individual computer user who has installed a number of software programmes on his computer, and who allows other users to connect to his computer through the telephone line via modem and copy the programmes onto discs. The pirate in most cases has copied the programme onto his own computer without authorisation of the copyright holder's consent is also a copyright violation.

End-User Piracy

End-user piracy takes place when a user copying software onto hard disks of more comptuers than the number authorised by the publisher. This form of piracy perhaps takes place on a wider scale than other forms because end-users often make substantial copies of the softwares possessed by them and then distribute or exchange the same. Though this harms the interests of rightholders, endusers definitely gain out of it because this leads to obvious economic advantages for them.